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[jamsat-news:1953] ANS-242 AMSAT Weekly Bulletins


ANS is a free, weekly, news and information service of AMSAT North 
America, The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation. ANS reports on the 
activities of a worldwide group of Amateur Radio operators who share an
active interest in designing, building, launching and communicating
through analog and digital Amateur Radio satellites.

Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to: 

In this edition:
* AO-40 Orbit Observations
* ARISS in Cross-band Repeat Mode
* ARISS Status - 23 August 2004
* This Week's News in Brief

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-242.01
AO-40 Orbit Observations

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 242.01
August 29, 2004
BID: $ANS-242.01

Peter Guelzow, DB2OS, reports that Victor Kudielka, OE1VKW did an
analysis some weeks ago and was the first to discover some odd changes
in the Mean Motion of AO-40. 

It appears that the eccentricity may have changed, but it is also
influenced by other effects and can not be used alone to evaluate
possible changes in AO-40's orbit. Viktor has some expanded diagrams of
mean motion and eccentricity, as well as for the heights of peri- and
apogee and their velocities on his home page:

Viktor noted, "I am unable to judge which points are just imprecise
measurements and what are the influences of data smoothing or other
manipulations. The only big enough effect is the change in mean motion"

Peter continues, "If you look carefully on the data, you will see that
the 'orbit change' already happened *before* the sudden battery event.
We can only speculate, that it is the battery. It could be indeed also
some remaining fuel?"  Peter added. "The 'thrust' phase is also much
longer than the battery event, not only a few hours or days.
Perhaps,could be smoothing/manipulation of the NORAD data too. There is
room for a lot of speculation."

Peter concluded, "Assuming the S/C mass to be 400kg, than this change is
due to an impulse of 40 kg m/s or equal to 5 minutes of hot Arcjet
firing.I have no idea if the battery is capable to do this. Indeed, if
it is shortened it will get glowing hot and vent everything."  

[ANS thanks Peter, DB2OS for the above information]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-242.02
ARISS in Cross-band Repeat Mode

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 242.02
August 29, 2004
BID: $ANS-242.02

The ARISS program is pleased to announce that the amateur radio
equipment aboard the International Space Station is now operating in
cross-band repeat mode. We realize that many of you will miss the
packet-operating mode. However, cross-band repeat allows further
experimentation of the ISS amateur radio system

The downlink for this operating mode remains the same, so listen for the
station on 145.80 MHz.  The new uplink frequency is 437.80 MHz.  All
frequencies are subject to Doppler shifting.  For further information on
working satellites and adjusting for Doppler shift, please review Emily
Clark's (W0EEC) excellent presentation on AMSAT's website,

ARISS is an international educational outreach program with US
participation from NASA, AMSAT (The Amateur Satellite Radio Corp.), and
the American Radio Relay League.  ARISS offers an opportunity for
students to experience the excitement of Amateur Radio by talking
directly with crewmembers on-board the International Space Station.
Teachers, parents and communities experience, first hand, how Amateur
Radio and crewmembers on ISS can energize youngsters' interest in
science, technology, and learning.  Further information on the ARISS
programme is available on the
website http://www.rac.ca/ariss

[ANS thanks Scott, N3ASA and Frank,KA3HDO for the above information]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-242.03
ARISS Status - 23 August 2004

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 242.03
August 29, 2004
BID: $ANS-242.03

1.Illinois School Contact Successful

Challenger Learning Center at Prairie Aviation Museum in Bloomington,
Illinois experienced a successful contact with Mike Fincke, KE5AIT, on
Monday, August 16, at 1805 UTC.  Fourteen year old Roxie Able,
KC9CSV,was on the microphone using W9AML, and Grant Zehr, AA9LC, acted
as the control operator. Mike answered thirteen questions put to him by
the students. Two TV stations, one radio station, and several newspapers
attended the event.  The ARRL ran a web story on the contact. “Astronaut
Tells Youngsters He's Craving Fried Chicken,” can be found at:
This site also provides a link to the audio of the contact. 
Another article was run on Bloomington’s Pantagraph site. See
“Long-distance chat,” at:

2.Upcoming School Contact

Upper St. Clair High School in Upper St. Clair, Pennsylvania has been
scheduled for a contact with the ISS on Friday, August 27 at 13:46 UTC.
This school is a crew pick of Mike Fincke’s.

3.ARISS International Meeting Held

The monthly ARISS International Teleconference was held on Tuesday,
August 17.  Agenda items discussed included the AMSAT/ARISS joint
meetings to be held on October 8  13 in Arlington, Virginia.  A
roundtable panel discussion for ARISS participants as part of the AMSAT
meeting is planned. 

Kenneth Ransom proposed that an ARISS special event be held during the
December/January timeframe similar to the Field Day activity held in the
U.S. in June, but with international participation. Such an event would
not only be enjoyed by ham radio operators, but would also be a boost to
the crew’s spirits during the holiday season.

ARISS Delegate Gaston Bertels is working with ESTEC’s ISS Utilization
Service to see how they are interfacing with the NASA Headquarters
Education Office regarding the possibility of setting up a yearly
activity for Dutch schools relating to space. This would be funded by
the Dutch government. Gaston is working to have ARISS included in the
planning. This yearly event in the Netherlands would culminate in a
school contact with the ISS.

4.AMSAT/ARISS Planning Meeting Held

A planning meeting for the AMSAT Symposium and ARISS International
Delegate meeting was held on Saturday, August 21.  Carl Walz has agreed
to be the AMSAT banquet speaker. Carl was involved in the installation
of some of the antennas on the Service Module and will discuss NASA’s
Vision for Space Exploration as part of his talk.

5.ARISS QSL Cards of Note

The ARRL received a request for a radio contact confirmation card
(called a QSL card) from a sight-impaired ham radio operator.  Mark
Spencer met the request by using ARRL's Brailler machine to fill out the
ARISS QSL card.  Another ham radio operator wrote on his QSL card: 
"Although I’ve been a ham operator for 36 years, this radio contact with
the ISS got me more excited than I’ve been about ham radio in some

[ANS thanks the ARISS Team for the above information]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-242.04
This Week's News in Brief
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 242.04
August 29, 2004
BID: $ANS-242.04

** The Cassini-Huygens spacecraft has successfully performed its
scheduled Periapsis Raising Manoeuvre. A 51 minute burn of the primary
engine corrected the spacecraft trajectory to place it on a course to
encounter Saturn's largest moon, Titan, in October. The manoeuvre also
raised the periapsis by over 400,000 km.--SpaceDaily

** An ESA-designed house that uses technology designed for space could
become the basis of the new German Antarctic station, Neumayer-III. The
new station has to meet stringent laws set up to protect the Antarctic
environment, which is where the use of space technology comes in.

** Australian scientists predict that a revolutionary new way to harness
the power of the sun to extract clean and almost unlimited energy
supplies from water will be a reality within seven years. Using special
titanium oxide ceramics that harvest sunlight and split water to produce
hydrogen fuel, the researchers say it will then be a simple engineering
exercise to make an energy-harvesting device with no moving parts and
emitting no greenhouse gases or pollutants. --SpaceDaily

** A newfound planet detected by a small, 4-inch-diameter telescope
demonstrates that we are at the cusp of a new age of planet discovery.
Soon, new worlds may be located at an accelerating pace, bringing the
detection of the first Earth-sized world one step closer. "This
discovery demonstrates that even humble telescopes can make huge
contributions to planet searches," says Guillermo Torres of the
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA), a co-author on the
study. It was made using the Trans-Atlantic Exoplanet Survey (TrES), a
network of small, relatively inexpensive telescopes designed to look
specifically for planets orbiting bright stars.  --SpaceDaily


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This weeks ANS Editor,
Lee McLamb - KU4OS
ku4os at amsat.org
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